Hibiscus mutabilis L.

Confederate Rose




Family: Malvaceae

Genus: Hibiscus

Category: Shrub - Deciduous

Zones: 7 to 9

Size: To 15' tall, 10' wide

Growth Rate: Fast

Exposure: Sun, Filtered Sun, Part Shade


Blooms late summer to autumn. Flowers open white and change to deep pink over about a 3-day period. Hence the name "mutabilis" meaning change. Blooming does not commence until the days shorten, late summer to autumn. Drought tolerant once established. Easy to root from cuttings. Perfers full sun to light shade.


Native to China.

Published in Sp. Pl. 2: 694 in 1753.


My Experience: 

I was given a 'stick' in October 2009. I cut it into 10" lengths and potted them up in damp soil. They all rooted easily but I let them dry out and only one survived. I kept it in the conservatory in the pot for the winter and planted it out in late spring in the front. It leafed out and made a 3' tall and wide shrub the first summer. It wilted daily if not watered and started to bloom in autumn but was hit by frost. In 2011 it quickly grew to 8' tall and almost as wide and buds formed in September.

Sources of Information

© 2010-12 Lisa J. Miner